TORONTO, Jan. 21, 2020 /CNW/ - Severe weather across Canada continues to highlight the financial costs of climate change to insurers and taxpayers. In 2019, floods, rain, snow and windstorms damaged homes, vehicles and commercial properties. Insured damage for these severe weather events reached $1.3 billion last year, according to Catastrophe Indices and Quantification Inc.
Notably, 2019 ranked the seventh highest in insured losses on record. Like 2018, no single event in 2019 caused the high amount paid out for losses. Instead, Canadians and their insurers experienced significant losses from a host of smaller severe weather events from coast to coast.
Top Insured Damage Severe Weather Events in 2019
Loss ($ million)
January 24 to 25
February 3 to 4
February 24 to 25
Two winter storms
Greater Toronto Area and Eastern Canada
April to May
Quebec and New Brunswick
July and August
Top-10 Highest Loss Years on Record
Total loss ($ billion)
Notable severe weather event
Fort McMurray, Alberta, fire
Alberta and Greater Toronto Area floods
Quebec ice storm
Multiple events including Ontario and Quebec rainstorms and windstorms
Slave Lake, Alberta, fire and windstorm
As the financial cost of severe weather rises, Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) is advocating for all orders of government to increase their investments in mitigating the impact of extreme weather and in building resilience against the damaging effects of extreme weather events. IBC promotes investing in upgraded infrastructure to protect communities from floods and fires, improving building codes and land-use planning, and offering incentives to shift the development of homes and businesses away from areas at highest risk of flooding.
It is not only insurers who foot the bill for severe weather damage, it's also taxpayers. Consequently, IBC is advocating for all stakeholders to work together to reduce the financial strain that flood events cause. For every dollar paid out in insurance claims for damaged homes and businesses, Canadian governments and taxpayers pay out much more to repair public infrastructure that the severe weather has damaged.
"The cost of climate change to Canadians, their businesses and governments continues to rise," said Craig Stewart. IBC encourages all orders of government to work together to reduce our collective climate risk, beginning with a national action plan to address flooding," said Craig Stewart, Vice-President, Federal Affairs, IBC.
About Insurance Bureau of Canada
Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) is the national industry association representing Canada's private home, auto and business insurers. Its member companies make up 90% of the property and casualty (P&C) insurance market in Canada. For more than 50 years, IBC has worked with governments across the country to help make affordable home, auto and business insurance available for all Canadians. IBC supports the vision of consumers and governments trusting, valuing and supporting the private P&C insurance industry. It champions key issues and helps educate consumers on how best to protect their homes, cars, businesses and properties.
P&C insurance touches the lives of nearly every Canadian and plays a critical role in keeping businesses safe and the Canadian economy strong. It employs more than 128,000 Canadians, pays over $9 billion in taxes and has a total premium base of $59.6 billion.
For media releases and more information, visit IBC's Media Centre at www.ibc.ca. Follow us on Twitter @InsuranceBureau or like us on Facebook. If you have a question about home, auto or business insurance, contact IBC's Consumer Information Centre at 1-844-2ask-IBC.
SOURCE Insurance Bureau of Canada
For further information: Media Contact: Vanessa Barrasa, Manager, Media Relations, 416-550-9062, [email protected]
Insurance Bureau of Canada is the national industry association representing Canada's private home, car and business insurers. Its member companies represent 90% of the property and casualty (P&C) insurance market in Canada. The P&C insurance industry employs over 114,000...